Reconstruction of Makerere Main Building kicks off, works to be completed by October

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Reconstruction of the iconic Makerere University Main Administration Building that was gutted by fire in September 2020 officially kicked off on 14th March 2022

During the site handover to the contractor on Monday, Makerere University Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe said that the contractor was under instruction to use every resource at their disposal to ensure that the main external works are completed by 8th October 2022, the date when the climax of the year-long celebrations marking 100 years of Makerere University‘s existence will be held.

While addressing the press, Prof Nawangwe alongside the Acting (Ag.) Deputy Vice Chancellor (Finance and Administration)-DVCFA, Prof. Henry Alinaitwe and Director Estates and Works, Eng. Christina Kakeeto revealed the contractor for the site as Messrs Excel Construction Limited who won the bid worth UGX 20.5 Billion.

The reconstruction is fully funded by the Government of Uganda which committed UGX 21 billion. “I would like to thank the Government of Uganda, particularly His Excellency the President and our Minister of Education and Sports who is also the First Lady, for their efforts in ensuring that we receive the money required to restore this icon of Higher Education” remarked the Vice Chancellor. “I equally want to thank the Parliament of Uganda for availing the funds through a supplementary to enable the works begin this year” he added.

The Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe (C) flanked by the Ag. DVCFA-Prof. Henry Alinaitwe (R) and Director Estates and Works, Eng. Christina Kakeeto (L) addresses the Media on the Main Building Reconstruction, 16th March 2022, CTF1, Makerere University.

The Vice Chancellor shared that the reconstruction will adopt modern building methods, with a reinforced concrete frame as opposed to the original block work structure, while maintaining its distinct outward
appearance. “The interior of the building has been completely redesigned but the exterior architecture must be exactly what it was before the fire.”

“I want to thank all the alumni from around the world who expressed their concern following the tragic gutting of the Main building, and who are ready to contribute to the restoration” remarked the Vice chancellor.

He noted that this readiness of alumni to contribute will be greatly appreciated when the time to refurnish and re-equip the restored building comes, because the funding from Government will only cater for the structural works.

“From our analysis, we lost more than UGX 4 billion in furniture and equipment; most of this furniture was quite old. And so we have come up with new furniture schedules, which will go through bidding to get the real cost, which we expect will be more than UGX 4 billion because we have to refurnish the building with modern furniture and equipment” explained the Vice Chancellor.

“We shall introduce some new facilities that will enhance the functionality of building,” remarked Eng. Christina Kakeeto in response to a question on what the totally redesigned interior will come with. “We shall have facilities for Persons with disabilities, more fire escape routes, and ensure that the fire hydrants around the premises are functional” she elaborated.

The Director Estates and Works added that systems that aid fire detecting and firefighting as well as automated systems to improve utility consumption through optimum consumption of water and modern light switching will be installed in the reconstructed building. She concluded that the building will be modern, energy efficient and well aerated.

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